16 Activities to Keep a 2-Year-Old Busy for Minutes and Minutes of Fun

games for 2 year olds
(Getty/Westend61)

Here’s a fun fact all parents of 2-year-olds learn early on: keeping a toddler entertained for longer than a minute is a feat and a pain. While playing games that are fun for fun’s sake are great, you also want to sprinkle some educational elements in their day. So with that in mind — and to save you the headache of trying to think of one on the fly — we’ve gone ahead and rounded up some classic games and learning activities for 2-year-olds that you’ll enjoy just as much. Bonus for parents: they all contain some sort of developmental and educational component, so you can have hours and hours minutes and minutes of fun.

Simon Says

An oldie but a goodie. Simon Says is the perfect game to play with a toddler on minimal sleep: you can lay on the couch shouting commands and your kiddo will have a ball following along. Added tip: You can sell this as a developmental game that teaches listening skills.

Hot and Cold

Why reinvent the wheel? Sticking to the classics was good enough for your parents so it’s good enough for you. Hide your toddler’s favorite toys around their room and teach them how to play Hot or Cold by helping them find it. “Warmer” and “hot” means they’re on the right track and “cooler” and “cold” means they’re moving further and further away.

One For You, One For Me

Remember that old Twix commercial with the “two for me, none for you” slogan? Yeah, this game is the opposite of that. Teach kids how to count and share by divvying up similar items like snacks, markers, toy cars, or Cheerios. Or Twix.

Hide and Seek

If you’re looking for the OG in toddler and kids games, hide and seek is it. Just make sure you keep a watchful eye on where exactly your toddler decides to hide, just so they don’t hurt themselves.

Freeze Dance

A favorite at every kid’s party put on your kid’s favorite music and dance around with them. Then randomly stop the music and make them freeze in their last dance position. See what fun and ridiculous poses you can come up with.

Animal Dance Party

This game is if your toddler had a dance party at the zoo. Play some upbeat music and shout out an animal name as the kids are dancing. Encourage your little to dance as the animal and see what wacky way they can groove to the beat.

Circle Groove

This is a favorite at kid’s birthday parties and your toddler will love it too. Get the family to stand in a circle and choose one person to start with a dance move, then the next person will mimic the first move and add one of their own before passing it on to the next person. This goes on and on until the dance just gets too silly and complicated. It sounds like a lot but it’s actually super fun.

Name That Tune Disney Edition

If your toddler is a Disney+ fanatic and has viewed a healthy catalog of Disney cartoons then this will be a favorite game to play. Create a personal playlist of Disney songs or put on a Disney radio station on Pandora or Spotify and ask your toddler to name that song. They obviously won’t know the name of the song so they’ll probably just shout “Elsa,” “Gaston,” “Ariel” or “Frozen,” “Tangled,” “Aladdin” at you. You can also just hum or sing the songs yourself if you don’t have access to the soundtracks.

Catch

Enjoy this classic pastime while teaching your toddler hand-eye coordination. Start with a light, soft ball, and see how they do before you try some underhand tosses.

Kick The Ball

Just like catch, this is a fantastic activity for teaching coordination to a toddler. Gently kick a soft soccer ball back and forth or give your little one a goal to shoot for, like between two chairs.

Monkey in the Middle

Let your kid be the monkey as you and another adult or an older kid throw a soft ball or item into the air over the toddler. Encourage your tot to jump up high to try and catch the ball. This is truly endless fun so you might be playing it for a while. Bonus tip: like Simon says, you can play this seated if you throw the ball high enough in the air.

Catch the Bubbles

Not sure if you’ve noticed at a birthday party yet but toddlers lose their shit over bubbles. Use a soap bubble toy to blow some bubbles and watch your toddler scramble to catch one in their hand.

Finger Painting

Encourage your budding Picasso to express themselves with some finger painting. This can get messy so buy some large construction paper to cover the table first. Then let your toddler loose on watercolors and see what they come up with. Prompt your toddler to draw some shapes and help out when they need the extra nudge. Make sure they help you clean up.

Twister

Another classic game we grew up playing that also teaches colors and coordination. And it’s also a great way to teach the difference between left and ride sides of the body.

Name That Color

This is not so much a game as a way to teach colors while also keeping your toddler from eating the raw eggplant at the supermarket or grocery store. Teach toddlers how to identify and group fruits and veggies by color while sitting cool in the shopping cart as you dash to and fro before she inevitably wants to walk just like daddy. Bonus, it’s also a great way to teach names of fresh produce.

Counting With Play Doh

Kids love them some Play Doh! So use their seemingly endless attention span for all things colorful Doh to learn the shape of numbers. Sculpt numbers 1 through 10 using colorful Play Doh with your child and have your toddler identify them all over and over again.

Finish That Song

It’s as simple as it sounds: start by singing a song your 2 year old knows fairly well and stop just short of the last line or lyric. Then prompt your toddler to finish.

Where’s Your…

Clearly there’s a theme here with memory games, but it’s not our fault toddlers eat them right up. This one is also a great game to teach them about body parts and test their memory. Start simple with “Where’s your nose, where’s your mouth” before moving on to more complicated words like shins, elbows, forearms, and forehead.

Ryan Gosling Teaming With John Wick Director for Fall Guy Movie

Gosling is The Fall Guy
(Getty/Elisabetta A. Villa)

Sometimes it seems like every TV show from the 80s and 90s is getting rebooted or remade or turned into a movie.

The Fresh Prince is coming back as a drama, Who’s the Boss is coming back with much of the original cast, Roseanne came back, even Twin Peaks had a sequel. At one point Mark Wahlberg was supposed to star in a movie version of The Six Million Dollar Man.

That project is stalled somewhere in Hollywood development hell, but a new movie based on a Lee Majors show just got announced, and with Ryan Gosling and the director of the John Wick movies involved, it’s sure to get made.

The movie is about a stuntman, and it’s at least going to be loosely based off of the 80s show The Fall Guy, that starred Majors and the other big Heather from the 80s, Heather Thomas.

The show, which was created by Glen Larson, the producer behind the 80s shows Battlestar Galactica and Magnum P.I. (both of which were remade this century), was about a Hollywood stuntman who moonlighted as a bounty hunter to make ends meet. Hollywood has tried to make this movie a few times, most recently with Dwayne Johnson, but it seems like this it’s finally going to happen.

With David Leitch, the former stuntman and coordinator who co-directed the John Wick movies and handled Atomic Blonde by himself, behind the camera, Gosling may be our next unlikely action star especially when you pair this with the spy thriller he’s doing for Netflix.

No word yet on when this will be out – the deal was only just struck, so it will be a while – but it seems to me that turning a fun but largely forgotten TV show with a cool premise into a movie is a decent bet. Especially with this team.

Hospice Nurse Helps Dying Dad Fly to See His Son Play One Final Football Game

Sick Dad Sees Son Play Football
(Facebook/hospicelc)

A dad, his son, and one final football game. That was the dying wish for a Kentucky dad who was diagnosed with an extremely rare and aggressive cancer in August. He wanted to see his son play one more time. His nurse at the hospice facility knew his son’s high school football game was too far away to drive, so she found a local pilot who could fly all of them to see his son on the gridiron.

50-year-old Scott Sullivan was diagnosed with a rare cancer that spreads to the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord and was given a life expectancy of two to four months, according to CNN. He was discharged to the Hospice of Lake Cumberland, where Sullivan told his nurse his dying wish; to see his son Cade play football at least one more time.

His nurse, Jerree Humphrey, said she knew the drive would be too much for him to handle (it would’ve been about 8 hours in the car). So she looked to the sky and found a local pilot who volunteered to fly all of them to the game on September 11th. The group flew 200 miles on game day to see Cade, a sophomore, playing his first game of the high school football season.

For Scott, it was possibly the last time he’d see his son play. They sat on a hill overlooking the stadium to be socially distanced, but as soon as his son spotted them he ran over and gave his dad a hug.

“You could just not help but cry,” Humphrey told CNN. “He just embraced him so hard and was just so thankful for him to be there.”

“Words could not be put into sentences or phrases to describe how I felt at that time,” said an overwhelmed Scott. “I was just so happy to see my son.”

A tragedy like that is incomprehensible. One day you’re fine, the next your world is turned completely upside down. But for one last game, a dad got to see his son play football, and everything was good again, if only for a few hours.

Father Figures: No Clue

“I never met my real father. My mom always told me he was a bad guy, that he loved Jack Daniels and died of a drug-induced seizure in his late 30s.

My stepfather was a monster of a man who beat me so badly that at 6 years old, I was placed in short-term foster care.

It goes without saying that I was terrified to become a dad. I thought that all those bad traits lived somewhere in me and I would continue a negative cycle.

Recently, I took a DNA test to try to find out more about my ‘father’s’ family. To my absolute shock, the man I thought was my father wasn’t! My father is alive and well and has lived only 20 minutes away from me my whole life.

After 36 years, I met my father for the first time in mid-June, and since then he has not only accepted me into his life, but my two wonderful sons as well.

He had no clue I existed, and he has gone out of way to be a part of our lives.”

– John Brophy

Want to share a story about fatherhood? Email [email protected]

NBA Star Dominating the Bubble With Coffee Business Out of His Hotel Room

Butler Coffee
(ESPN/Twitter IraHeatBeat/ClutchPointsApp)

Jimmy Butler has had a fantastic run in the NBA bubble. Not only has he been the go-to star for the Miami Heat, leading them to an improbably tear through the NBA playoffs, Butler has also taken advantage of the unique situation to run his own thriving coffee business out of his hotel room. And now, he’s filed trademarks for his biz to take this out of the hotel room and into the free market.

The NBA bubble has been a massive success. The league found a way to safely resume their season and have their playoffs, and they’ve done it without a single outbreak of COVID-19. The situation, derided at the time, involves keeping all the players stuck in hotels at Disney World. They even have a snitch hotline to allow people to anonymously report bubble violators.

With strict regulations, players can’t even have food delivered from certain restaurants. So Jimmy Butler took advantage of supply and demand and opened a coffee business out of his hotel room. He brought a French press with him to Florida and has been using it extensively apparently. Earlier in August, the first image of his “menu” board popped up on social media.

He’s tagged his “business” as Big Face Coffee. He sells it for $20 a cup for any size and had plenty of business as teammates and coaches were unhappy with the quality of coffee in the bubble.

And now it seems like Big Face Coffee could be coming home from Florida. Butler filed for a trademark for BFC and for his trademark slogan, “NO I.O.U.’s” While it’s only been the NBA elite that’s been able to enjoy Big Face Coffee, maybe it’ll become the next Starbucks (probably not). Either way, it’s been a funny side story from the bubble, to see the side hustle of Butler blossom just as his star rises on the court.

And who knows, maybe it’s been the Big Face Coffee that’s fueled the shocking tear the Heat went on through the playoffs.

12 Funniest Parenting Tweets of the Week 9/25/20

Funniest parenting tweets week of 9-25-2020
(Twitter/RobertManchild Getty/ LumiNola)

It’s officially fall, but we are still in the middle of a pandemic – so I guess that means everything is more or less the same, but the leaves are changing colors, so that’s nice. The thrill of being a parent isn’t bound by the seasons, which means the hilarious parents of Twitter haven’t missed a beat. Here are 12 of the funniest parenting tweets of the week – but like, imagine that they’re pumpkin spice-scented or something.

Make it a quiet celebration

If it works, it works

That’s just science

What I mean when I say “yeah, I read a lot”

And it’s always true

How do they all know it works every time

No reason for both of us to go

Why not “Toilet Tot” or “Little Latrine?” Really missed the mark.

*Sweating*

HOW ABOUT EVERYONE STOPS YELLING

Internal investigation

At least it wasn’t a dog biscuit

Did you miss last week’s funniest parenting tweets?

Keanu Reeves Was “Mauled” While Adorably Reporting on Teddy Bears In 1984

Keanu Reeves Teddy Bear Convention
(Twitter/CBC)

A lot of unsavory things have come back to bite celebrities in the butt lately – poor decisions from their pasts resurfacing, forcing them to face the repercussions of their actions. In the least surprising turn of events, a vintage video of Keanu Reeves has made its way back to the public eye, and as it turns out, he’s even more pure than we previously thought. Before there was John Wick, before The Matrix, even before Bill & Ted, Keanu Reeves turned his attention to the world of Teddy Bears.

After decades in the spotlight, Keanu Reeves has demonstrated time and time again that the only thing as massive as his talent is his heart. He goes above and beyond for his fans, is generous with both his time and money – overall, he is a most excellent human being. Somehow, through all of it, he’s managed to stay incredibly humble.

Completely in keeping with his character, an adorable video from 1984 recently resurfaced, showing a Keanu that looks about five years younger than he does now. Nearly four decades ago, Reeves worked for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation show “Going Great” as a kids news correspondent. Reeves really went for it, throwing himself into the mission at hand-deliver the most pressing info about the first-ever Canadian International Teddy Bear Convention.

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation dug up this gem in early September for National Teddy Bear Day (forgot to mark my calendar again), and we’re so happy they did. Little Keanu hits the convention-goers with hard-hitting questions right from the start, asking head-scratchers like, “Why are all the bears’ first names Teddy?” which is a thing that will absolutely keep me up at night.

Keanu digs deep, finding out the koalifications of the bears attending the convention. He approaches a woman asking, “what college did he go to?” which she answers without missing a beat. In fact, the bear is even repping his alma mater with a Paws Preparatory School t-shirt (but he didn’t flash a diploma, so we’re skeptical).

This simple yet delightful video is exactly the palate cleanser we need right now. Incredibly, even four decades after he ventured into the world of teddy bear conventions, Keanu Reeves is still bursting at the seams with a lighthearted youthfulness – congratulations, Keanu, on nearly 40 years of being pawsitively endearing.

Puma Celebrates Super Mario’s 35th Anniversary With Leveled-up Nintendo Sneakers

Nintendo Super Mario Puma Shoes
(Puma.com)

35 has been quite the year for our favorite star-powered Italian plumber. Mario has become so deeply ingrained in the world of video games that even non-gamers can’t help but love the goomba-hopping hero. Nintendo is celebrating Super Mario’s 35th anniversary with a slew of events from September of 2020 to March of 2021, making sure this coin-grabbing hero is properly appreciated after decades of hard work. There will be in-game events, new merch, and exciting Super Mario news released throughout. Even Hasbro joined the party, releasing Mario-themed Jenga and Monopoly games, proving that Mario is a force to be reckoned with in the real world, not just on screens.

The latest brand to jump on the Mario Kart is none other than the shoe giant, Puma. For a while, there were whispers of a collaboration between Nintendo and Puma, but these iconic shoes were only recently confirmed. Nintendo took to Twitter in early September to show off these colorful kicks, captioning the photo, “Ready to Super Jump for #SuperMario35? The RS-Dreamer #SuperMario 64 from @PUMAHoops is available for purchase starting tomorrow!”

You could run, jump, collect coins, and crush goombas all day in these bad boys. The RS-Dreamer Super Mario 64™ Basketball Shoes boast lightweight cushioning, full-coverage grip, and a snug fit. Oh yeah, and they look cool as hell.

The Puma website states, “When it comes to dreaming, Nintendo takes first place. Name a bigger legend than the red-hat-rocking, bad-guy-stopping Mario™ – you can’t. That’s why we’ve teamed up with Nintendo to bring you the RS-Dreamer Super Mario 64™. They’re court ready with PUMA Hoops tech like ProFoam and high-abrasion rubber, and feature Super Mario 64™ design straight out of the iconic game. Put up video-game numbers while paying tribute to one of the biggest dreamers in the world. Never sleeping. Always dreaming. The game is never over.”

The RS-Dreamer Super Mario 64™ Basketball Shoes are available in both adult ($125) and Junior sizes ($100) directly from Puma’s website. No word on how long these brightly-colored pumps will be available, so if celebratory shoes are your thing, collect your very own pair today (if you have enough coins, that is).

So, Your Kid Wants To Be A Flareon? Here Are Eevee Evolutions You Need To Know

Eevee evolutions
Olivia Harris /Getty (Getty/Olivia Harris)

If you’re still playing Pokemon GO, you’re not alone. As a matter of fact, four years into its run Pokemon GO is still one of the most popular gaming apps. It encourages some obsessive behaviors, sure. But, it’s also a shit ton of fun and is just the encouragement our kids (read: “we”) need to get off our butts and get moving. It accidentally encouraged exercising, which was pretty great. And now, during this time of prolonged social distancing, it has become a welcome excuse to go out into the world while still giving yourself space. There’s nothing better right now than going to the park and seeing people… but also not having to actually, you know, talk to them.

And if you or your kids are obsessively playing Pokemon GO, there’s a good chance you’re also obsessively trying to evolve an Eevee. Thanks to the game, Eevee has become one of the most popular and played Pokemon… mostly due to the fact that there are just so many variations, known as “evolutions.” Do you know all the evolutionary options, their nicknames, and how to get them? Clearly not, since you’re here. So, let’s get started.

Eevee Evolutions And Nicknames

Espeon: Sakura
Flareon: Pyro
Glaceon: Rea
Jolteon: Sparky
Leafeon: Linnea
Umbreon: Tamao
Vaporeon: Rainer

How to Evolve Your Eevee

According to literally everyone, the easiest ways to guarantee you get the Eevee you want is to follow a two-step process.
1 Rename your Eevee by the desired nickname.
2. Collect 25 candies
3. Evolve your Eevee

There are other ways, though…

For the Original Evolutions: Vaporeon, Jolteon, and Flareon Evolutions

There’s only one option here and that’s to keep catching Eevies, renaming them, earning 25 candies and evolving your Eevees into Flareon, Jolteon and Vaporeon.

For Espeon and Umbreon

Espeon and Umbreon were the next generation of Eevee evolutions. You can stick to the nicknaming tricks or make your Eevee your “buddy.” Everywhere you go, Eevee will follow you, like the world’s cutest and craziest looking puppy. After you walk about six and a half miles, you can evolve your Eevee. How do you determine if you’ll Eevee into Espeon or Umbreon? It depends on the time of day. If the Pokemon GO screen displays its nighttime interface, your Eevee will evolve into Umbreon. During the day? Eevee evolves into Espeon. Choose which one you want and evolve accordingly.

How to nab Leafeon and Glaceon Eevee Evolutions

Welcome to Generation 4 of Pokemon GO! For these evolutions, you’ll need to put a little more skin into the game…literally and figuratively. The best way to get a Leafeon or Glaceon is to head to the store and spend 200 coins on either the Mossy Lure (for Leafeon) or the Glacial Lure (Glaceon). Once you apply the lure, it will work just as the name suggestions and lure that specific evolution of Eevee so you can catch them. Once you’ve caught the Eevee with your specific lure, you can evolve them and they’ll take on that evolution.

Up Next: Sylveon

Pokemon GO has promised the next evolution of Eevee, Sylveon will be available in 2020. So far, fans are still waiting (somewhat) patiently.

Want More Help

We are, by no means, suggesting you cheat. If, however, you were into that kind of thing, though, this video offers some tips. *wink, wink*

 

Watch Matthew McConaughey Watch His Dazed and Confused Audition

McConaughey Watches Dazed and Confused Audition
(Twitter/McConaughey)

It’s not often that you see a performance in a movie and immediately know that a star is being born.

One such performance is Matthew McConaughey as Woody Wooderson in Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused. Thirty years later, McConaughey is a beloved Hollywood figure, a household name with a good time guy persona, a penchant for going shirtless, and an Oscar under his belt.

But thirty years ago, he was just another struggling actor looking for his big break, which he got when he landed the part of a skeevy high school hero who everyone knows is too old to be hanging with high school kids but nobody really minds because he’s charming and laid-back and Matthew McConaughey.

Of all the memorable characters and quotes from Dazed and Confused, McConaughey somehow manages to walk away with the movie. He went to the audition to get a summer job and ended up a Holywood mainstay for the next three decades and counting.

Recently, McConaughey watched his audition tape for Wooderson, in which he recites a couple of his iconic lines. Somebody filmed the actor watching himself try out for the role, and as he always seems to, the actor had a great time.

Obviously his audition went alright alright alright, because he landed the role, and soon after it landed A Time to Kill, and he was off and running.

It’s fun to see him watch his audition, and then explain what we just saw, as if we didn’t know. In the short clip, he shows off the qualities that make him such a popular star. He’s humble, eternally likable, and cool as a cucumber; that’s what we love about Matthew McConaughey, he keeps getting older, but he stays the same age.